In modern-day American political discourse, we often hear the term "rape culture" thrown around to describe American society’s view of and reaction to rape -- and, more broadly, sexual assault.
According to Dictionary.com, the definition of rape culture is:
A subset of values, beliefs, and behaviors in a society that trivializes or normalizes sexual violence, including rape.
While the term is often abused, and while the U.S. does indeed have significant issues with rape which merit discussion, it would be rather difficult to argue that America has a "rape culture," especially when compared with most other nations.
That being said, it seems our neighbors across the pond need to be reminded that rape, in all instances, is an abhorrent, atrocious evil. On Thursday, the BBC decided to publish a piece titled, “Forced penetration: If a woman forces a man to have sex, is that rape?”
Yes. The answer is yes. If someone has sex with another person while under duress or without consent, that is rape, regardless of the gender of the individual being raped. Apparently, Britain didn’t get the memo.
According to the BBC, a woman forcing penetration from a male is “not rape under the law of England and Wales…"
The piece then goes on to examine a new study by Dr. Siobhan Weare of Lancaster University Law School, who interviewed thirty males who have experienced the aforementioned behavior, with one of the suggestions in the study being to grant "serious consideration" to making laws which would protect males as well.
What is despicable about this whole situation isn’t the article itself, but that the BBC gives its readers the impression this should be a serious question before anyone even has a chance to read the bulk of the story: essentially asking if rape is, in fact, rape.
Hopefully, for Britain and Wales’ sake, they rectify the error in their legal code Dr. Weare has so blatantly exposed.